The Paly Voice

Young Playwrights to debut student-written plays

Alex Merkle-Raymond, Author

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Eight Palo Alto High School students will have their plays showcased by professional actors today at 7 p.m. for free at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts as a part of the TheatreWorks’ Young Playwrights project.

Students from the Theatre 3, 4 and 4H classes workshopped original 10-minute plays for a month-long project, and eight of their scripts were selected to be performed for a public audience.

The goal of the Young Playwrights project is to pair students with professionals in order to have them experience what it’s like to develop their own plays, according to Jake Arky, TheatreWorks’ Associate Director of Education. The eight students were Jason Pollak, Sabrina Sonner, Sophie Swezey, Molly Kraus, Lizzy McCole, Zoe Limbrick, Dalia van Zyll and Leanne Miron.

Last year's plays being performed after one day of rehearsals and a month of workshopping. This year eight plays were selected by students and being performed for free tomorrow night. Photo courtesy of Rob Wilen.

Last year’s plays being performed after one day of rehearsals and a month of workshopping. This year eight plays were selected by students and being performed for free tomorrow night. Photo courtesy of Rob Wilen.

“The process has been really informative,” senior playwright Lizzy McCole said. “I felt like my play was done when I turned it in and thought I wouldn’t make many edits, but I ended up making a big change that required a lot of rewrites. I think my script is much better off because of it. Working with Jake [Arky] and the other playwrights has been exciting, and I can’t wait to see them all performed.”

The students workshop the plays all day in preparation for their one-night debut. The event is public and free in order to have everyone experience the arts.

“The goal is to not only spur the creativity of the next generation of playwrights, but [also] give all students a forum to express themselves in a creative way,” Arky said.

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